June 30, 2009

blue bear

While my kiddos are traveling through the mountains with their grandparents, I have time on my hands. Lovely time... to do with whatever I please. Today my hubby & I will take in a matinee, but the last couple of days have brought the urge to straighten and sort. I have found myself in their rooms... just tidying up. Not the good spring cleaning that is long overdue, but the kind that includes sweeping surfaces clean, making beds... just enough so that I can leave the doors open and not want to run screaming when I wander by. So here and there, I am making some progress. And last night I pulled down a box from Cam's closet... his memory box. There were several things waiting on the shelf beside it, just waiting to join ranks. But as a Mama is prone to do... I dug down deep in the box and reveled in the smallness that once was. The tiny booties and the once-shiny silver spoon... the brittle pacifier and the Guess-How-Much-I-Love-You-Bunny. Oh I know now... that I didn't enjoy it as I should have. I didn't grasp onto the days as I wish I would have. But the moment has passed, and the lessons have been learned. One disappointment was what wasn't in the box. I feared that it might not be... and to find that I was right saddened me just a touch more. Blue Bear. A gift from a girl I worked with... soft aqua blue... squishy and scented with chamomile for a good night's rest. Oh how my Cammie loved Blue Bear. They spent every night snuggled together, Cam asleep within moments of being laid down. By day Blue Bear was dragged and tumbled and gnawed on. I'm not sure I even have a photo of the two of them together... but it was love. And I wished that Blue Bear had been in that box. How could I not have saved him... Pushing on, I decided to clear the rest of the closet shelf. Sweaters and blankets and old school papers. Beanie babies and marble track... and suddenly there he was.

Blue Bear. Tattered and stained and not even a faint whisper of chamomile remaining... but love oozed from every stitch of him.

Blue Bear is my gift this week. Maybe the reminder I needed, that no matter how much I think I didn't cherish those long ago moments... I actually did. And it does a heart some good.

Wander over to to discover a few more everyday gifts...
at Emily's Chatting at the Sky.

June 29, 2009

y is for...


And my favorite yellow... is when the sunlight skips in through the window and sends itself skittering across the floor... creating lacy patterns that dance on the wall.

I wonder what my a to z friends thought of for "y!" Pop on over to Jen's Unglazed and find out! All I know is that there was a lot of y-ning about "y" going on this week!

June 28, 2009

worth the wait

Hi Cam.
Hi Mom!

My heart took a deep breath... upon hearing his little voice across the miles, after not hearing it for a week. All morning I watched the clock, and as the sun stretched up towards 9am, I toted two phones around the house, not knowing which would ring.

I love this camp he has been at. I love that Cam loves it, and that Laura loved it. The week flew by so quickly for me... but more so for him, I am sure. A week full of swimming and archery, new friends and lucky six-rolling hair. A week of funny kids, and being their calm when they were searching for it. A week of being that go-to guy. His counselor relayed that he was more than a star camper... that they just don't come better than Cam. It is nothing this Mama doesn't already know... but to hear it from an unbiased source, well, it means the world.

And so they are off... my children and their Grandparents. Off to discover new places, and settle in the comfort of others revisited. In three weeks I'll put my arms around them again. So... will I miss them? I feel like to miss them would mean I would wish them home... and to wish them home would mean them missing extraordinary opportunities that I cannot give them. So, I will think about them and I will revel in their stories when they call... and I'll know it was worth the wait when they traipse up the walkway with their arms open wide, smiles across their sun-kissed faces, weary from adventure.

June 27, 2009

we were that close

I am like any other mother... all I want for my children is every possible opportunity... certainly not limited to a relationship with Jesus... success in what they love... and a chance to be the "one" chosen for the Shamu show. And I think you have to believe it can happen... in order to even have the chance. We were really close on this trip... as "Kenny" walked out of the restroom, covering her neck with wet paper towels to dispel the heat just a bit, we struck up a conversation. About the weather, about the day... about sitting in the front row to get wet. Camden loves to sit in the splash zone... and on a day that the heat index was reaching up over one hundred, I was certainly not opposed to cooling off. "Kenny" could certainly see the joy in my young son's face... I'm confident she saw a bit of his heart for wildlife, and for just having fun. Then she asked him his age, and he happily replied 12! She told us to look for her up front... she would save us a seat. My mind was racing- was she choosing him? Dawn, do not get your hopes up. Do not say anything to Cam. Dawn, stop thinking about it. If it happens, it happens.

Entering the arena, we rushed to the front, saving seats for Laura & Eric, who were still cooling themselves in the Arctic exhibit. Our spot? Second row... dead center. Camden waved to "Kenny" and gave her a nice hello. After a few minutes, she came over to me quietly and whispered in my ear. I picked him, but then I couldn't pick him... because the child has to be between eight and ten. I'm sorry. I smiled, and thanked her. I think that he had the possibility was more than I had ever really expected. Hoped for? No, but expected. Yes. He was that close...

Although my dear daughter was not as thrilled as I, about our much coveted seats, she managed to enjoy the show. Eric was also not particularly thrilled, but I was certain that we would not get as wet as the other sections, being as this was much further back with Shamu's platform in front of us. And I did promise Laura, that I would not mind if she walked up a few rows right before the major splashing began. She chose to stay... and through her glare, I could see her smile. And it was great to cool off, even if she wouldn't admit it. Yes, we got more than splashed, but in the moment I felt refreshed and alive. Would I sit there again? Yes... because sometimes you have to grab life and let it spill all over your soul... even in the form of chilly salt water.
I loved being front and center for the show... I felt that given the opportunity I could have reached out and caressed that beautiful God-created creature. Absolutely breath-taking. Oh yes, we were that close...

June 25, 2009


My first roller coaster must have been at Paragon Park... I remember how that huge wooden structure loomed above everything else... and I remember riding it. Once. I don't remember if I loved it, how old I was, or who I even rode it with. I just remember it was larger than life... probably the tallest structure I had ever seen at that point in my young life. And it was probably what led me to my love of roller coasters today. And I do. Love them. I love the anticipation that ripples through me as the coaster reaches the top of that first giant hill... and that it causes a quick spontaneous prayer to be sent quickly up to heaven. I love that quick flash of fear that overcomes my mind as I am lifted from my seat and sent roaring down the track. And I love the bubbles of laughter that float up from my insides as the next turn or drop sends me off in flight once again. It is the closest I'll get to soaring through the air like one of our fine feathered friends. Because while it might seem risky to some, I have a trust in those restraints... more trust that I ever could in a parachute. I could ride over and over again... the tenth ride being as exciting as the first.

This weekend was a first for us... all four of us tightly strapped in across the row... tall enough and brave enough... flying together. Feet dangling, hands grasping, and throats sore from screaming. I loved that we were together... that we filled up the row... that we were sent off on our thrilling ride as a family. Peeking around to say a last I love you before barreling down the endless drop. Together. Wherever the road might take us...

June 24, 2009

the early birds

When it comes to theme parks, I am a get-up-and-go kind of girl. I don't want to miss one moment of being inside the gate, having fun. My family (and friends) have grown accustomed to this habit of mine... and they just laugh. But to me, it is serious business. I don't plan the whole day out, but the first hour or so? Oh yes. Because, you know, if you get there when it opens (or before!) you can do most everything you really want to do in the first hour... and then just enjoy the rest of the day... But sometimes, getting to the park early has even greater perks...

We have discovered that if you head right over to the Seaworld dolphins, as soon as the gate opens, they are actually just waiting for you to come and play with them. Most people are rushing over to get in line to feed them, but if you just head over to the lagoon, you will meet up with the most playful and joyful creatures, who are waiting just for you. We've been the only ones there, and gotten to throw their toys out to them... and it is almost unbelievable that you are even having the chance. On this morning, there were no toys, but after a long night's rest, the dolphins were craving some playful attention. And as Camden reported, having a dolphin slide by under the palm of your hand is pretty much the best moment ever.

It was hard to tear ourselves away from the lagoon and the dolphins, who were spinning and splashing away. It is such a wonder... and they are such a beautiful part of God's creation. And as much fun as we had feeling them swim by our waiting hands, it was almost more fun to watch them from the underwater viewing area... creating rings of silver water, and chasing them about, or nudging a friend for a playful game of tag. We just took some time... to enjoy.

June 23, 2009

three hours from home

This summer we decided to just take a short weekend get-away. No big summer extravaganza... just a couple of days for the four of us... before the kids head off to Michigan with their Grandparents. There was hardly time to anticipate the trip... but once we were out of the driveway I could feel vacation settling in. I could feel the freedom and the fun curling up around us. Flip flops and free smoothies for breakfast, and we were on our way. While we were laughing and chatting along in the car, a prayer of thankfulness went up from my soul. While the evidence I see with my eyes tells me my children are growing, I began to look deeper, and really see how they have grown. Looking on together and sharing a game... lending a helping hand or singing along with the same tune... one splitting the snack and letting the other automatically pick first. They are growing in more than just inches. But even in their maturing state... there is still time to play. Still time to splash in a fountain, be tossed into the pool, or gaze up at the clouds racing across the sky.

I love Tuesdays... and digging around my heart for an ordinary moment that struck my heart in an extraordinary way. Thank you, Emily... for making Tuesday special... for inspiring Tuesdays Unwrapped.

June 22, 2009

a concert revelation

Camden has been working so hard in his middle school band camp... playing his percussion for the concert band, and piano for the jazz band. I love that he wants to do more and do it well... and that he has such a joy about the work and the accomplishment. His fan club, comprised of Grandparents, Parents and an Auntie all came to cheer him on for the concert. It was truly amazing what can happen in eight days of camp... with middle schoolers. The music was really well done! As Camden was roaming back and forth along the percussion line in the back, from snare to bass to xylophone and crash cymbal, I realized something... for the Mother of a percussionist, just watching a concert can count as aerobic activity! But I loved moving about the auditorium to have the chance to see my son tapping away.

x is for...


And x-tra x-tract, too.

I think everyone has their "thing." You know, the thing you are walking by at the grocery store and pick up, just in case you might be out... or something you need for a recipe, but forgot to actually check the cupboard for... so you'll grab one to be on the safe side? My "thing" is almond extract. The three bottle I have may be small, but the amount required for any given recipe is hardly more than a drop or two. Of course, now that my Mom has discovered those yummy almond cream puffs I might be able to better use my extract!

But I have a confession to make...

I also have x-tra Worcestershire sauce. If you look closely, you can see that there are actually four bottle here. For years, Eric & I would grab a bottle every time we were going to make Chex mix, until we discovered that we had enough to last us about eight years. And it did last... and then we were out. And so the cycle begins again!

I'm x-cited to see what my friends chose for "x" in Jen's A to Z Monday game!!

On another note...
The past four days or so have been full of such LIFE! I have been grasping onto each moment in each day... and my heart is full and begging to be poured out. I am going to try to catch up... I want to get these words out and onto paper, so to speak, because I want to remember these days that have made me laugh and live and love... and then laugh some more. And of course, I want to catch up with my friends... please don't think I have forgotten you! It just takes me some time to get back into my routine when I have been away. Until then, I leave you with this smiling face...

June 17, 2009

overcoming resistance

I was having a struggle within... about reading The Shack. I didn't want to read it, and then I did want to, and then, once again, I didn't. It sat by my bedside for weeks. My husband was nudging me along, and then my Mom asked me if I had finished it yet. Finished? I hadn't even started. And then one night, to satisfy everyone else, I read the introduction. But it didn't do much for my desire to read it. After a few days, I pushed on and read the first chapter. At that point, at least I was wanting to read the book. But there it sat, night after night... without a even glance. I don't understand my resistance. But it was real. Maybe not justified, but real. After the journey my Mom & I had been on together I felt like I should have been in that book... devouring it. But I wasn't.

But Friday, while I was ignoring my housework, and lounging with my kids... I did pick the book up again, and fell into the story. I finished it Sunday. (Mom & Eric, keep reading... sorry I didn't tell you I finished it.) I think I have needed some time to digest it... to let it sink in and figure out how I feel about it... how it makes me feel.

There are some parts of it that hit me so hard... With love. With understanding. With clarity. And there are other parts that I am having a hard time fitting into my life. I know it is a book of fiction... but I saw a lot of truth as well. And I'm still sorting it out. But I am enjoying the sorting... my heart is alive with it.

I still don't know why I resisted... but I'm so glad God moved my resolve and gave me a little push towards Him. If you've considered reading it, go ahead and set it by your bed for a week or two and see what happens next...

June 16, 2009

not goodbye

Those tears that almost incapacitated me last weekend... I am now counting them as a gift... a beautiful gift that I will be ever thankful for. Thursday night we gathered for dinner... my parents, my sister, my Gramma and my own kids & husband. It was a change of plans... but a welcome one. My Gramma's trip got moved up just a couple of days, but somehow, I was okay with it. It was a fantastic evening. Camden pushed Gramma around in her borrowed wheelchair... we poked around a shop or two, and gazed out at fountains and waterfalls that were scattered around the outdoor mall. It was beautiful. The mall... the breeze... just being together. Our dinner conversation was lively and I don't think I will ever forget the light in my Gramma's eyes as she realized that Eric was armed (he was coming from a security detail.) A little excitement, I suppose. We reminisced... all of us... and as I looked around the table at the ones I love most on this earth, I saw the beginnings of tears forming in glistening eyes. But not me. I had had my tears and my sorrow... and tonight was for joy. God reminded me of that last week... and His gift to me was priceless. My heart ached for my family... and those tears they held back... I hope they had the chance to let them fall. I hope they had their chance to grieve for this moment in our life... and then push on with a smile. Because this was not goodbye... it was simply until we meet again.

i think i am fickle?

hmmm... now that my template is back, i'm not so sure i love it....

temporary loss

This morning I finally found out that it is temporary... the loss of my blog background. I don't know what happened to it, but more than that, I don't know why it has affected me with such a feeling of loss at all. But I loved it. The colors... the swirls... I loved it. I was going to keep it... forever. So maybe I will have it back soon. I hope so. If not, I will adjust... but like anything, it will take time. On this Tuesday morning I am feeling silly for even caring... but I do. And while my heart was so full and ready to pour out words... this bump in my road has somehow stopped up the flow. I am hoping that my jumbled mess of a heart will start sorting once again... and soon.

June 15, 2009

w is for...


Or, to be more accurate... an orca whale.
Long before he ever met Shamu, my son was in love with Lolita... the orca at the Miami Seaquarium. He toted his little love around everywhere. I don't know what their connection was... all I knew was that there was a special one. His love of Orca's led to one of our favorite books... the Dory Story. It could've been about my Camden... an imagination combined with fascination. Once and a while we sit down together and read it again. He has watched every Free Willy movie... and someday I hope he has the chance to see these beautiful whales out in their natural habitat.
Last weekend we trekked back to Seaworld- Cam & I along with my sister and her little ones. There were many moments worthy of being tucked away and treasured... but what he was most thrilled about was sitting in the front row at the Shamu show. Seeing the whale up close... and getting soaked.
I suppose when you are in love with a whale, you better not mind squishing along in your wet shoes.

Happy A to Z Monday! I wonder what my friends have chosen this week... Check it out over at Jen's Unglazed!

June 14, 2009

sunday splashings

The sun glinted in through my windows this morning... bright and full of life. And I remembered... today is Flag Day. It was a pleasure to hang out our American Flag today... young hands helping mine, making sure she never touched the ground. We added a few other touches of red, white and blue before we left for church... colors of summer.

My ride home from church was actually pretty calm. Notice I rode, not drove. Laura is improving. It'll just take practice. Lots of practice. I think that means I will be chauffeured around town for quite a while.

Our favorite law officer delivered us lunch... we indulged just a bit more than our diet allowed, but tomorrow is another day... and I enjoyed having a partner in crime as we shared just one more slice.

An afternoon full of laundry and reading... and an occasional nodding off, I suppose. It hasn't been the most productive weekend... but another one will come.

The second week of band camp begins tomorrow. Camden has much to practice, and the the delight in his eyes when I told him that yes, he could use the pot lids as crash cymbals has made my day complete!

June 12, 2009

just a day

Although it is not, it feels like the first day of our summer vacation. No one trekking off to work... or driver's ed... or band camp. I did get a few things accomplished this morning- but the kids were snuggled up in the living room, just lazing around... and I kind of got caught up in it. A cute movie... laughing with my kids. I have to admit that a wave of guilt snuck its way in... and though I was tempted to push away the guilt and head back to my chores, I decided to stay put. Because how many days will I actually have like this? Sometimes it just has to be okay to hang out in your jammies and watch TV... even when there is to-do list waiting...

I know I wrote this on a Friday... but it was Tuesday moment. One perfect to unwrap with Emily over at Chatting at the Sky

June 10, 2009

the brave boy

I have felt it coming for about a year now... and have tucked the information away somewhere in my mind. But the time had come... and I couldn't put it off any longer. It was time for the seventh grade tetanus shot. I didn't tell him until the day before. I didn't want to spring it on him, but I didn't want him to have too much time to think about it either. His response was to gulp a big breath of air, then puff it out, all at once... and followed it with okay.

It's been quite a while since he has had a shot... it used to occur quite often. Every time he got an ear infection, which was very frequent up until about five years ago. My son has never been good at taking medicine... and would choose a shot over consuming any small quantity of an ooey-gooey, thick and chalky medicine. And it was easier for me, so we went with it. But he is twelve now... and has conquered some types of medicine. And the shot has been a thing of the past. But he is brave.

Sitting in the doctor's office, he knew it was coming... but he appeared calm and I believed that it would go smoothly. Because that is what I do... unless my daughter is along- and that is another story in which denial will crush you to the floor, or at the very least, get you kicked in the knees. But we were doing okay... until the doctor said that the nurse would be in to give him his shots. Shots? I thought there was just one. But no... there was the tetanus, and a couple others that I ended up agreeing to, but cannot remember now what they were. The look on Cam's face changed... no longer serene, but still willing.

I offered to let him squeeze my hands, and he held on... but he never squeezed. I thought, Oh, he didn't even feel it! But when I looked down at his face I could see that he was feeling them... and not enjoying the experience... at all! The third shot almost did him in, as I could see he was beginning to edge away from the nurse, but he managed to hang in there. Done. And I was so proud of him. I felt like a bad Mom, promising only one shot, and then ending up with three... but my Cam is a good guy, and he didn't hold it against me.

I promised him a milk shake on the way home. Any size he wanted. We waited for quite a long time in the McDonald's drive thru, only to find a rough sign taped to the menu board: No Milk Shakes or Sundaes until further notice. Seriously? I could have predicted this... but was not of the mind to follow my own instincts. So off we went to Publix, on a mission to buy our ingredients and make our very own. But the temptation got the best of him while we were waiting in line... and since the deli does provide spoons...

He only tasted the ice cream on the way home... saving it for lounging on the couch and his TV. He was pretty cute sitting there... enjoying his Phish Food and scooting along his shiny new Hot Wheels car that I could not refuse him. I'm just glad we survived...

June 09, 2009

listening in

I love the Children's Sermon at church. I love watching the kids gather around our Pastor... at the foot of the cross. I love how the big kids help out the little ones... reaching out a hand or patting the spot on the floor next to them... prompting folded hands for prayer. And the message is always one I can lend to my own life.

This week our church has moved to a new location... someday we will have our own building, but for now we gather at a school, and this summer it is a new one. Our Pastor asked the kids to look for things that were just a little different than our old location... and to look for the things that were the same. We have brought along all the pieces that make our church a church... the altar... the banners... the flags. And God? He is always here. Always with us no matter where we go. Always the same. Always. It is something I was glad to be reminded of... that He is always the same. He gives us wings to fly and He holds our hands and hearts through our struggles... and we grow. But God? He has never changed. Never. In a life that can change with the blink of an eye, I am so very thankful for a constant in my life. For the Author of Life... the author of my life... who never falters, even when I do.

It was not a new message... but it was one I needed to hear again. Maybe I am too tall to sit with the young ones at the Pastor's feet, but the message is for me... and for you. And that space... at the foot of the cross? It is one I count on... and will, for all my life.

June 08, 2009

v is for...


Oh yes... my getting-to-be-quite-grown-up daughter started Driver's Ed today. We've been driving a little here and there... getting to know the car and a safe parking lot, or two. But now she is getting professional instruction... which is probably a really great idea! I actually did not think I would be the one... to take her out driving... the one that she would rather drive with. But it turns out I am... and it is not a bad thing for the two of us. But I am really hoping she learns a lot these next two weeks in class!

Check out A to Z Monday at Jen's!

June 07, 2009

with my whole being

I guess I am an emotional girl... Maybe that doesn't sound like a news flash.... so many things make me tear up... celebrate, and shout for joy. Maybe what I mean is that my emotions get the best of me... or maybe they are the best of me. Because while good news can make my heart take flight, sadness can overwhelm my being. From my heart to my mind... to my soul. I have one more Sunday visit with my Gramma before she leaves. I thought I was doing okay. Really, I did. After initial heartbreak at the news of her moving north, I realized it was what she wanted and needed... and I came to terms with it... was excited for her. And I have tried to make the most of every moment that we have together... from taking her to church and sharing a hymnal, to begging my Mom to make us more almond cream puffs. Sitting on the couch with her this afternoon... we just chatted off and on... I rested my head on her shoulder... and we held hands. I'm going to miss her. Really miss her. And as I sat by her side, I thought about how I was going to say goodbye to her next Sunday... and it did me in. I made it out of the living room before the tears started... or at least my face was turned. I made it to the car and was able to hide my eyes with my sunglasses before the flood gates opened. Eric reached out his hand and just held mine while I cried. I know my tears are not for her... they are for me. Selfish? Perhaps. But I do not know how to stop them. And I do not know how to lift the weight that has settled over me tonight. The muscles in my face are tight and my jaw is aching with the tears that have come and gone... and still... my heart has put a spell upon my soul... and I wonder how I will actually say goodbye...

June 03, 2009

flexibility required

Ahhh... summer is here. We are done with homework... and racing out the door to catch up with our busy schedule. Laura is no longer a freshman... and Cam is a big seventh grader now. I love the last day of school!

Growing up, it may have been a one time thing, but I recall it as a last day of school tradition... going to the A&W Drive-in. I loved that place... where you sat in your car and the food came to you. Car-hops in orange checkered kerchiefs and french fries covered in swirls of ketchup.

But now? For my kids? The last day of school typically means a picnic at the beach. I planned it, my husband fixed up the sandwiches... and we watched the sky. I am a girl who occasionally lives in a world of denial. Yes, we typically get afternoon thunderstorms, but not on my last day of school picnic! On the way to the beach we drove through two banks of storminess... and Eric kept making sarcastic remarks about how it sure looked like it would be clear at the beach. He had me convinced enough of our picnic's demise that I came up with an alternate plan, just in case... a park with a big covered area, where we could eat and surely stay dry. Still driving through showers, we thought maybe five minutes stalling might be all we needed to clear the storm... so we quickly turned into Wendy's and feasted on a frosty before dinner. Flexibility... it is a requirement for an afternoon or evening outing in the land of the thunderstorms!

Arriving at the beach, we were greeted by sunshine and no evidence of rain... let the celebrating begin! Swimming and tunneling through the sand... collecting a shell or two, and catching up on a nap. Just as I had planned. Sometimes denial is not such a bad place to be! As the afternoon wore on and our friends were delayed, the dark clouds started rolling in, and we decided to head for the park... I was done second guessing the weather!

I don't know if it ever rained at the beach... I was amazed it never rained at the park, the way the dark, ominous clouds skirted around us. But we stayed dry. And our picnic dinner was delicious. The kids laughed and played and raced at the park... entertainment enough for all ages... even a high school sophomore! And we visited with friends... who were ready to head out on their vacation.

On our way home, Laura piped up from the backseat... The beach was fun, but I'm glad we got to go to the park, too. It was really fun. Hmmm... my sentiments exactly, my dear. Sometimes even a great plan can be improved upon!

June 01, 2009

a curtsy

I wish I had taken her picture... although I'm not sure that I could've done her joyful glow any sort of justice. And wish as I might, there is no going back anyway... so I might as well just keep the memory alive in my heart... of her shining moment when her face showed no fear or trepidation... only pure joy.

I am a lot like her... my Mother. I shy away from the crowd and from recognition, even when I might deserve the praise... even when I have worked so hard to impress. But setting out to impress doesn't mean I want to be publicly set apart. It doesn't. I just want to show my best... and share the gifts I have been given. And I come by it rightly.

This past Sunday, my parents cooked and set out a buffet brunch for 100 of their fellow church members... from fluffy omelet casseroles to decadent almond cream puffs. Every morsel was delicious... and prepared by their loving hands. This is what she does... she cooks up a storm. It's not the cooking that makes her smile bright though... I think it is the hostessing part... the satisfying reward of pleasing a crowd. And she & I... we do that well. People pleasers... that is who we are.

But I was proud of her... not for her wonderful cooking skills, but for how far she has grown. When the Pastor asked for a round of applause I thought my Mom might be hiding in the kitchen... but I was wrong. As I turned my head I fully expected her to peek out the kitchen window and wave before retreating back to safety... but I was wrong. There she stood... smiling filling up her whole face... and then... she curtsied. Perhaps a wisp of fleeting fear passed through her heart... but she didn't let it show.

My mom is a beautiful woman, inside and out... and I love that she is growing more and more comfortable sharing herself with the world. Shine on, Mom... your light is contagious!

(And as for Bob... well, I expected him to be silly and take a huge bow... but he was content to just step back. And once again, I am thankful for him. Thankful for his part in my Mom's growth... and thankful for his great love for her.)

I sure love Unwrapping tuesdays with Emily at Chatting at the Sky!

u is for...


It has been said that the clothes make the man. Maybe. But maybe, God leads the heart of the man to choose the clothes he wears... a uniform... to serve with honor... simply to serve. Over the course of our almost seventeen years as husband and wife, Eric has worn many uniforms... and each has held a special place in our life together. The one he wears today is no more important than the last... and the one he wore way back when? It still holds a place of honor... in our memories and down to our very souls.

Happy A to Z Monday! Check out other posts with Jen at Unglazed!